We are four weeks into the new school year already. Griffin started kindergarten this year and all of a sudden I am sending two boys off to school. Time continues to pass quickly like it always does, doesn’t it?! Not too long ago I would have predicted that starting school would be a very rough transition for this guy. He has always been the kid that I have to remove every last one of his little death gripped fingers from my hair and run out of the room reassuring myself that he will be fine. New things can be hard for him, he likes to stay home over going out, and of course we went through the whole seizure thing too…I tend to worry more about this little guy.
He couldn’t have surprised me more when this was his response to the first day of school. (Thank you, Lord!) These photos say it all. Ready to go. Here I come kindergarten! He was confident, excited and ready for me to leave so he could start this whole school thing. He was beaming from the second I walked out of his classroom to the second he jumped into the van after school. I was beaming too. He has been so excited about his first four weeks of kindergarten and his mama couldn’t be more proud of him. What a gift to have him loving school so much.
Levi is in second grade this year. It seems like I was just taking him to his first day of kindergarten and now he seems so grown up. He has such a fun second grade teacher and is loving school again this year too! Griffin loves going to school with his big brother. The second day of school they requested that I just drop them off and not walk them into the building. It happened to be raining that morning so although I wanted to protest that they really needed their mom to walk them in (little boys always need their mom!), I opted to stay dry in the car and let them be big.
Jake didn’t want to be left out of course. He was super sad to see his brothers go off to school but we all are adjusting. He is enjoying being first in line to go to the farm with dad when no one else is around. And it won’t be long before there are two home with me again. So hard to believe!
Since losing a child, it is easy for me to want to cling tightly to my kids. Sometimes I just feel like crying and stomping my feet in protest that these boys are growing up so darn fast. Where did my babies go? What if something happens to them when they are away from me? Have I done enough to prepare them for this next stage? You might say I have my own little death grip on my kids. It is something I have to constantly surrender to the Lord. But I will never forget when what would have been Cora’s kindergarten year rolled around and all the first day of school photos started popping up in my feeds. I would have done anything to be the one sending my daughter off to kindergarten. I was heartbroken to say the least. I am never quite ready for summer to be over and for the school year to begin but losing Cora has forever changed my perspective on the gift that a new school year brings.
I am missing these two like crazy (maybe not as much as Tiny is missing them though!) but goodness it is so humbling to be given the opportunity to watch these boys grow. I get to know what they are like as a kindergartner and second grader. I get to know their personalities and interests and who their friends are. I get to know if the first day of school brings excitement or lots of nerves and jitters for them. And I get a front row seat to it all, experiencing it right along with them as their mom. Such a gift.
As we jump into this new school year, whatever that looks like for your family, let’s not forget the gift that we have been given as we watch our kids grow and let’s remember to pray for and love on the families who are grieving as they miss these precious milestones with their own babies this year.